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Tsunami Damages 2001-2017

Map No.


A tsunami is a series of large waves of extremely long length and generated by a violent, impulsive undersea disturbance or activity near the coast or in the ocean. When a sudden displacement of a large volume of water occurs, or if the sea floor is suddenly raised or dropped by an earthquake, big tsunami waves can be formed. The tsunami in the recorded time period with the highest death toll happened in the Indian Ocean in December 2004 (more than 230.000 people died), but the highest economical damages (more than 200 billion US$) were caused by the tsunami in 2011 that hit the nuclear power plant in Fukushima, Japan.

According to recent studies an increased occurrence of such events due to climate change and global warming is highly likely.


This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution - Non Commercial - ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

Contact us for more information on a commercial use of this map (including in publishing).

Technical Notes

This map shows the proportion of the total damages (in US$) caused by tsunamis 2001-2017


For a disaster to included at least one of the following criteria must be fulfilled:
Ten (10) or more people reported killed
Hundred (100) or more people reported affected
Declaration of a state of emergency
Call for international assistance

Data sources
This map uses data by  EM-DAT: The Emergency Events Database (last accessed March 2018). We aim to map as complete data as possible and therefore estimate data for missing values. In some cases, missing data for very small territories is not used in the cartogram and that area is therefore omitted in the map.

Further notes on the data, as well as all modifications to the original data source are noted in our data sheets. Data for this map will soon be available as a download.

Download data file

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